EAST LANSING, Mich. — Cassius Winston shook off a slow start and finished with 23 points to help No. 6 Michigan State beat Purdue 77-59 Tuesday night.
The Spartans (14-2, 5-0 Big Ten) have won nine straight.
The Boilermakers (9-6, 2-2) won their previous three games by a combined total of 55 points.
Purdue got off to a strong start, rattling Michigan State with pressure defense and took a 9-2 lead a few minutes into the game.
The Spartans cut down on their turnovers and held together as Winston, their leading scorer, made his first shot with 3:52 left in the first half. The junior point guard closed the half with nine points, giving Michigan State a 39-26 lead.
Purdue’s Carsen Edwards had a season-low 11 points on 3-of-16 shooting, including 2 of 13 from the 3-point line. He entered the game averaging 25.5 points to rank among the nation’s leading scorers. Edwards had five points in a 27-second span midway through the second half to pull Purdue within four points and to match his scoring from the first 28 minutes of the game.
Winston scored three of the Spartans’ next five points to push their lead to nine midway through the second half, and they added to the cushion by ending the game with an 11-1 run.
Michigan State’s Nick Ward scored 16 points and Xavier Tillman had 11 points.
Ryan Cline, Purdue’s second-leading scorer, had 12 points on 4-of-12 shooting. Freshman Trevion Williams had season highs with 13 points and 12 rebounds for the Boilermakers off the bench.
Purdue: Edwards had his worst game of the season, struggling to get his shot off against a defense geared to slow him down. When the junior guard did have an open look, he often missed. Edwards had scored 19 or more points in every other game this season, including a 40-point performance in a four-point loss at Texas last month.
Michigan State: The Spartans are winning without one of their top players, junior guard Joshua Langford. He missed a third straight game with an ankle injury. The players filling in for him have made the most of the opportunity, including freshman Aaron Henry, who was a part of the defensive effort against Edwards.
Purdue: At Wisconsin on Friday night.
Michigan State: At Penn State on Sunday.